First step taken for return of Syrian refugees

First step taken for return of Syrian refugees

First step taken for return of Syrian refugees

The foundations of 5,000 residences were laid on May 24 in the Jarabulus district of Aleppo within the scope of a Turkish government project carried out in terror-free zones in Syria for the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland.

In the first phase, nine housing projects were launched: Five in the region of Operation Euphrates Shield and four in the Peace Spring Operation area. Within this scope, permanent residences will be built in the regions of Jarablus, El Bab and Tel Abyad in northern Syria.

Construction of 240,000 housing projects for a total of 240,000 families is under the plan for the voluntary return of 1 million Syrians.

While the foundation of 5,000 flats has already been laid in the Jarabulus region, the house project will also include several facilities such as a mosque, bazaar, primary school, high school and health center.

Infrastructure works comprising asphalt roads, open spaces, gardens, electricity networks and water tanks will also be carried out.

Within the scope of the “Voluntary, safe, dignified return” plan carried out by Türkiye’s Emergency and Disaster Management Presidency (AFAD) and the Migration Management Directorate of the Interior Ministry, projects are also implemented for the employment of Syrians.

About 2,900 factories in some of Syria’s territories, which have been cleared of terrorism, were put into operation by local entrepreneurs.

It is planned to provide 100,000 employment opportunities with the establishment of 2,857 manufacturing facilities such as shoes, textiles, furniture, agricultural products, iron casting, packaging, olive oil, soap and craft bag production facilities.

In addition, several agricultural initiatives such as irrigation projects, beekeeping, livestock support, pulses and vegetable cultivation have also been initiated for the region in order to contribute to agricultural development on existing agricultural lands and thus increase employment.

Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu informed that currently, more than 3.3 million Syrian refugees reside in Türkiye, adding that some 554,000 of the refugees returned to their country voluntarily.

He also stated that if cross-border operations had not been carried out, the number of Syrian refugees in the country could have exceeded 9 million.

In one-on-one interviews with Syrians, the ministry determined that 70 percent of these people stated they would like to return to their country if certain conditions were met, Soylu noted.

“Syrians want to return to their country if the conflicts are over, their security is ensured, their housing and humanitarian needs are met,” he said.

The project in the region will be completed in two and a half or three years, while the cost of the project is covered by the Qatar Development Fund, he added.

In the meantime, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said that some 3.3 million irregular migrants were prevented from entering via the Turkish borders in the last five years thanks to the measures taken by the military on the country’s borders.